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NASCAR Bass Pro Shops Night Race preview and upset picks

Profile Picture: Robert Criscola

September 18th, 2020

The NASCAR Cup Series playoff field will be whittled down from 16 to 12 drivers following Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops Night Race at Bristol (7:30 p.m., NBCSN).

Denny Hamlin is the +400 favorite for this 500-lap affair as he seeks to join Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski, who won at Darlington and Richmond, respectively, to secure a berth into the next round. Hamlin has six wins on the year, second only to Harvick (eight), but has missed the Top 10 in three of his last four races.

Nascar Cup Series - Bass Pro Shops Night Race 2020 - Winner

Sat, September 19 2020, 11:30 PM

Denny Hamlin

+400

Kyle Busch

+450

Brad Keselowski

+500

Chase Elliott

+500

Kevin Harvick

+700

Joey Logano

+750

Martin Truex Jr.

+900

Ryan Blaney

+1000

Kurt Busch

+2000

Austin Dillon

+2000

We’ll go looking for some value as we make our selections for the 2020 Bass Pro Shops Night Race.

Kyle Busch (+450)

Kyle Busch is inexplicably still in search of his first win in 2020. Perhaps it will come at Bristol, his best track, on Saturday night.

Busch has been a dominant force on this oval for years, and his influence has not waned in recent races. "Rowdy" has taken the checkered flag in three of the last six heats held at Bristol and recorded two additional Top 5 finishes in that span, including a fourth-place effort here on May 31. No other active driver can even approach Busch’s 2,433 laps led at "The Last Great Colosseum." He’ll begin his evening in ninth place.

Joey Logano (+750)

Joey Logano could land his third win of the year and third career victory at Bristol on Saturday night at a decent price.

Logano might have been best when the Cup Series made its last visit to this oval on May 31, but he and Chase Elliott took each other out in the final few laps of that contest. That 21st-place finish was his worst result at Bristol in a 10-race stretch, which started with a victory in April of 2015. Logano’s average finishing position in that span, including that disappointing 21st, is 9.2.

The No. 22 Ford driver, who enters Bristol off back-to-back third-place finishes and Top 10s in eight of his last nine races, will start in second place.

Clint Bowyer (+3000)

Clint Bowyer looks like the best value on the board for Saturday’s race at Bristol as he attempts to secure a berth into the Round of 12.

Bowyer has never won at Bristol but has been as close as second on two occasions, including his most recent try on May 31. That was his fifth consecutive Top 10 finish over this course. Bowyer has recorded a Top 10 finish in four of his last six races overall. He’ll roll off the grid in 11th place. 

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